4/27/15: What I Did, Why I Did It

What I Did

Today, I continued wrapping up the final touches on my Remix an Interface project. Like I’ve mentioned before in other blog posts, I’ve found that the most difficult part of this project as been creating content (comments, captions, usernames, etc.). While its difficult to create a lot of original content for all 5 characters, and some of their monsters, I’ve found that one of the best things about this project as been the ability to take risks with my creativity in developing new, unexpected content.

Why I Did It

I’m hoping to have my project completely finalized within the next two class, and then begin work on my presentation.

4/22/15: Revision Plan

Today in Peer Review we shared our rough cuts in groups of three. I was so happy because my group LOVED what I had done for my project so far. After hearing the comments from Peer Review, there is not much that I need to change because it seems like I am headed in the right direction; however, there are a few minor things I could focus on, in addition to just finishing up the project and putting all the posts in the Buzzfeed article.

  • A major strength that my group pointed out was how I decided to put everything together in a Buzzfeed article to present the information.
  • One suggestion my group had was to try and use pictures and situations that take the characters out of their expected, predictable lives, and show them doing something unexpected. My group particularly liked how I had Velma going on dates and chasing after boys in her Instagrams, and suggested I switch up some of the other characters posts to make them more surprising and unpredictable.
  • One technical difficultly I am having is that my final “Sources” section of my Buzzfeed article will not seem to save or show up when I preview the article. In the “Sources” section, I am crediting where I gathered the profile pictures and full name information, where I gathered the Instagram template, and where I gathered additional background information–So, I really need to figure out how to fix this problem or determine another way I can go about including the sources in a different area of the article.
  • The most important changes that I need to make are just finishing up the posts and finalizing the project. In writing and editing the remaining posts, I am really going to focus on making the characters do something that is out of their norm and unpredictable. Additionally, I want to see if I can incorporate some of the characters most used phrases in the show (like “Zoinks!,” “Scooby-Dooby-Doo!,” etc.) into the captions and comments.
  • Given the amount of time we have left to work on this project, I am very confident that I will be able to finish everything on time and even have some leftover time to edit and perfect all of the posts and information.

3/27/15: Presentation Day #2

In our second day of presentations, the tool that stood out the most to me was Popplet! As I prepare to my job as a marketing coordinator following graduation, it’s useful for me to find tools that I can use on the go and with mobile applications that can help with collaboration and sharing of ideas. Especially since Popplet is intended for use on the iPad, it makes it a very useful tool to use in presentations and business meetings. I could easily carry my iPad from office to office, or business to business presenting the Popplet mindmap of my ideas and projects. Also, it seems to be easy to share and its possible to use a variety of different colors, writing, text, links, drawings, etc., which makes it very versatile about what you can include.

3/23/15: Presentation Day #1

Today we had our first day of presentations in class. Out of all the tools that were presented, the tool Erica presented, Thing Link, stood out to me the most. Thing Link was a tool that allowed users to upload a photo, and then add links to videos, websites, audio, etc. to the photo itself. In one of Erica’s examples, she showed a picture of Baltimore that she added links to using Thing Link. Seeing that example, I immediately started thinking about how I could use this tool in my future career to take photos of buildings or construction sites, and use Thing Link to provide further information for viewers and customers. I thought it was a great way to provide a variety of information in one central location. I’ll definitely be looking into using Thing Link in the future.

3/18/16: What I Did. Why I Did It

What I Did

Today, I continued work on writing and drafting my essay for the Interrogate an Interface project. Once I was able to decide how I wanted the essay to be divided up into its different sections, it was very easy begin writing. I plan to finish drafting the essay first, before I add in the screenshots of the tool.

Why I Did It

I believe writing the essay is the most difficult part of the project, because you have to make hard decisions concerning what information to include and how to organize the information. Once I get the essay completely written, it will be easier to insert screenshots into appropriate places.

3/16/15: What I Did. Why I Did It

What I Did:

Today in class, I spent time working on the the outline of my essay in addition to adding a navigation structure to my pages. I decided to break up my essay into five different pages: a landing page for the project, an Overview page, a Design & Modes of Communications page, an Affordances & Constraints page, and finally a Conclusion page. I added a linear navigation structure to the bottom of each page showing “Previous” and “Next,” and I also added linear navigation that shows all the pages on the Conclusion page. I began work on writing the essay, but I still have a lot more writing to do outside of class as well.

Why I Did It:

I wanted to make sure I had all my pages for my project in place, along with working navigation, so that organization will be easier when I start really writing and inserting information onto my site. Also, I thought the linear navigation was the best option for this project because it takes the viewer step by step (or page by page) through my project of Interrogating an Interface.

3/4/15: Work Schedule for Interrogate an Interface

For my Interrogate an Interface project, I will attempt to work on my project using the following schedule and deadlines:

  • March 4-5: Create a login, and research how the tool works and what it does (1-2 hours total work time)
  • March 6: Fill in the writer/designer analysis questions (about 1 hour total work time)
  • March 7-15: Spring Break
  • March 16-17: Outline web essay, take appropriate screenshots to accompany essay, draft essay (work time will variety depending on writing time, est. 3-4 hours total work time)
  • March 18-19: Draft slideshow and presentation (1-2 hours of total work time)
  • March 20: Arrive to class with completed drafts of essay and slideshow for peer review

3/2/15: Inspiration for Interrogate an Interface

Today, we spent time looking at a couple of other students Interrogate an Interface projects and essays from previous years. There were many different ideas and techniques utilized by students to successfully interrogate their interface, but two really stuck out to me that I would like to use for my own project.

The first was the idea to take and incorporate screenshots of the interface throughout the essay. Having a lot of screenshots that show readers exactly what the tool looks like each step of the way was very helpful. I think it helps readers to really understand the interface and give them the feeling of walking their way through the tool each step of the way. It’s also good to see the interface broken up into different parts, which I believe might help viewers if they want to move forward to use or try the interface themselves.

Also, after a viewing a couple project examples, I know that I want to keep my information concise for my own project. One example had almost everything spread out onto different pages, which really separated the information and made it rather annoying having to navigate from page to page to read the essay. For my own project, I want to try to keep all my information on at most 3 different pages. I think it will be easier for readers to navigate the project, and it will keep the layout of the project concise by keeping similar information grouped together.

2/27/15: Project Three Interface Choice- Thematic

I was lucky enough to get my first choice for our interrogating an interface project, and that interface is Thematic! Thematic is an awesome tool that caught my eye right from the start when I was exploring different interfaces. When I was narrowing down my choices, I knew I wanted a tool that I would be able to use in my upcoming marketing job following graduation. I will be working for a construction and architecture company, so I wanted to find a program that could highlight beautiful construction design, the process of building from start to finish, and a program that was very image heavy–Thematic was the perfect fit.

Thematic allows you to put together multiple large images to tell a story. The story is completely based on visuals, with just a small amount of text to accompany some of the visuals. Some of the example stories that I looked at in Thematic when I was exploring it were called “Manhattan to Brooklyn,” “Midtown Wandering,” and “5 Days in Scotland.” Each of these examples did an amazing job by using large, powerful images to virtually walk viewers through different geographical areas, creating the feel that viewers are actually in through areas experiencing the views and scenery themselves. I immediately thought that this would be an amazing tool for me to use to highlight the different construction projects and properties around the Virginia Beach area for the company that I will be working for following graduation.

2/23/15: Autocorrect & Autocomplete

Tools such a autocorrect and autocomplete are created to make life easier, but sometimes can just cause even more confusion. My main experiences with autocorrect come with the use of my iPhone. I can’t tell you the amount of times that my iPhone has changed a word into all capitals, causing the person on the receiving end of my text to believe I’m yelling at them. A simple “No thanks!,” gets transformed into a “NOOOOO!” and is sent into cyberspace before I can make the correction. And of course, I have experienced the common use of “duck” as a profanity. For me, this little autocorrected mistakes are not a big deal, and for the majority of the time, I catch the mistakes before they are sent; however, for people who are not as familiar with autocorrect or the general use of newer tools like an iPhone, autocorrect can cause some major issues.

Prime example: My mother. Whether it is the lack of her deciding to put on her glasses before sending a text or posting a Facebook status, or a simple autocorrect gone wrong, my mom is a frequent victim of the failures of autocorrect. While I feel sorry for her that she often encounters so many issues with a tool that is supposed to make her life easier, autocorrect has definitely helped to give me some great laughs while reading some of my mom’s texts. I think I receive more texts from her that are full of mistakes and spelling errors, almost appearing to be “drunk texts,” than I receive legible texts. Bless her heart for trying to understand technology. While I’ll continue to try and teach her the ways in this new digital age, and autocorrect will continue attempting to make her life easier, despite all odds I know my mom will continue sending me laughable texts–and for that, I thank you, autocorrect.